November 2, 2015
Speaker: Dr. Cutler Cleveland
Professor of Earth & Environment
Energy is central to any discussion of the human condition because it is central to the three pillars of sustainability. In the economic dimension, energy is clearly an important motor of macroeconomic growth. In the environmental dimension, fossil fuel energy systems are major sources of environmental stress at global as well as local levels; the most notable example is climate change. In the social dimension, energy is a prerequisite for the fulfillment of many basic human needs and services, and inequities in energy provision and quality often manifest themselves as issues of social justice. Greenhouse gas emissions can be substantially reduced only by replacing fossil fuels with some combination of renewable energy, nuclear energy, and improvements in the efficiency of energy use. How do we do that? This talk explores the importance of energy in our lives and in climate change, and the barriers and opportunities in the transition to low-carbon energy system.
This program is supported in part by a grant to Earth & Environment Professor Dave Marchant from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute through the Science Education Program.